Here is what students have to say about Metal Guru classes:

Sean Burns, Oddity Cycles wrote:

      “A true life-changer for me. Don’t die wondering.”

I can’t say enough good things about Carl and his venture, Metal Guru. If you are interested in learning a skill, advancing down the path or just want to see how one makes it 20+ years in the industry; go see him, take a class. A true life-changer for me. Don’t die wondering.

A pirate’s new ship (part 1).
A pirate’s new ship (part 2).
Orange Crush.


Ari Rosenzweig, Ari Cycles wrote:

“It was an absolute eye and soul opening experience…Carl is a bicycle university of knowledge and experience.”

Here is a link to some pictures from the paint course that I attended with Metal Guru, aka Carl Schlemowitz/Vicious Cycles. It was an absolute eye and soul opening experience. It opens up for so many creative solutions. The beginning of a new era for ari cycles….. Carl is a bicycle university of knowledge and experience. Highly recommended for professionals or even amateurs who want to give a personal life to their baby and meet one of the legends in the bike industry…..

Painting with Ari Cycles.


Andy Walker, Walker Bicycle Company wrote:

“Carl is not just an instructor, he’s an educator…I did not expect I would learn so much, on so many different topics.”

Holy smokes! I just went to Carl’s Tig Steel Bike Welding seminar, and it exceeded my hopes. I knew we would finish a bike, I did not expect I would learn so much, on so many different topics. Carl is not just an instructor, he’s an educator. We had a well prepared curriculum, with didactic and structured learning, but it was so relaxed, it didn’t feel like an effort. I had so many questions, on so many subjects, that Carl answered with the skill of someone who’s managed wholesale production for a long time, with its critical timelines, that finishing my bike was never in doubt. I was fascinated by all the machining capabilities of his shop, that my class turned into a machinist class too! I didn’t even start on the bike until part way through the 4th day, but I needed all the skills I learned to come together. It came together in such an amazing way, I couldn’t be happier. The product I made is such a satisfyingly good product, that I got orders for 4 bikes on returning home! We covered so many aspects of production, that I feel I have the skills to handle it. I recommend this course to anyone thinking of building bikes for yourself, or a few friends, or if it happens and you’re doing it for customers, you will be ready to do so.
Andy Walker

Walker Bicycle welds.


Ricky C. wrote:

“I learned more about machining, welding, and brazing than I could have hoped for.”

Thank you again for a great class this past week. I learned more about machining, welding, and brazing than I could have hoped for. The course was very well-balanced between lecture, hands-on practice and actual application. The bike frame looks fantastic (if I do say so myself!). I especially appreciated your over-the-shoulder guidance and readiness to step in when welding or brazing got a little dicey. After all, this was more than just a “project;” I wanted to make sure that I walked away with a well-built, quality custom frame. Your expertise and great attitude made the whole learning process and execution very approachable. I look forward to building more frames and, in due time, taking on the harder to weld/ braze situations.
Best regards,

Ricky builds a touring frame.


Tim L. wrote:

“I think you guys did a fantastic job with the aluminum frame building seminar and I am really grateful”

Hi Carl,
I just wanted to drop you and Frank a note to say thanks for the great class. Lots of great information and the ability to pick the brain of a guy with Frank’s experience is priceless. I learned a lot, from materials and filler, machine settings to all the subtle details about joint fit up and when to align, etc. All the little junk you could spend years chasing your tail before you got a good process down.
Having hosted a few training classes myself for various things, I know how difficult it can be to get the material across and still have a low-key and fun environment to keep everyone involved and engaged. I think you guys did a fantastic job with the aluminum frame building seminar and I am really grateful I had the opportunity to participate. The food was awesome, too by the way.

FTW (Frank Teaches Welding).


Stosh T. wrote:

“I learned so much in your class. I can’t thank you enough.”

I learned so much in your class. I can’t thank you enough. There is not much I would change. I found this class to be very helpful. Definitely a great starting point. Obviously there is much more to learn. I feel that now I have a good understanding of how steel frames are constructed and feel confident moving forward.

I’m really happy you started teaching these classes. Not only because you are near by. But also because you are an experienced frame builder with lots of knowledge. I am very interested in building another frame. I predict and hope you do well with the classes. Thanks so much for your time and patience. I look forward to staying in contact and keeping you updated with my progress. Please let me know some details and possibilities in furthering my education. Keep up the good work Carl!


Stosh T. paints again.
Stosh T. returns.
Stosh T. paints.
This bike goes to eleven.


Carl Wakefield wrote:

“Within the first day, I was welding beyond my expectations.”

I am new to frame building and completed the frame building class at Metal Guru specializing in TIG welded frames. Metal Guru is an educational venture of Vicious Cycles located in Mid-Hudson, NY. As a beginner, I was a little nervous about taking the 8 ½ day course. However, Carl Schlemowitz of Metal Guru quickly put my concerns to rest with his exceptional ability and patience in teaching. Within the first day, I was welding beyond my expectations. The course is well structured with a schedule of lectures, demos and plenty of hands-on. While we closely followed the course outline, Carl adjusted the course to provide more time on areas where I needed more attention. Amazingly, I completed a fix gear frame that I welded and feel is better than some others that I have purchased.

I am 55 years of age and always wanted to build bike frames as a recreational hobby. Carl not only taught me the necessary understanding but gave me the needed confidence. Also, Carl helped me with setting up my small shop. I am looking forward to continuing my dream and returning for additional classes in frame painting. If you are interested in frame building as a hobby or as a career, Metal Guru is definitely worth checking out. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me directly.
Carl Wakefield

Chronicle of a fixed gear frame.
Chain link.


Aaron Dykstra, Six-Eleven Bicycle Company wrote:

“I couldn’t be happier with my decision to take the Metal Guru course.”

“I learned more about TIG welding than I ever could have hoped for during Carl’s TIG for Frame builders class. As a current full-time frame builder who brazes, I was eager to expand my fabrication skill set. Carl was a great teacher and went above and beyond, teaching the methodology behind the processes, not just the basic mechanics. Learning the method from a fellow frame builder was a great way to learn TIG welding specifically in regards to bicycle fabrication. I went into the course with minimal TIG knowledge, but left with all the tools necessary to be a proficient TIG welder. I left feeling far more confident about TIG welding than I was expecting. I couldn’t be happier with the decision to take the Metal Guru course.”

Six-Eleven welds.


Aaron W. wrote:

“I’m not sure I’d buy an off-the-shelf frame again because building my own was so completely satisfying.”

“A frame is the heart and soul of a bike, building my own frame gave me a connection to my bike and to riding that I never felt before. Working with Carl was a fantastic experience. More than just teaching me how to make a frame, he showed me where precision and metallurgy reign and where decades of an artisan’s experience provides the finishing, personal touches. I’m not sure I’d buy an off-the-shelf frame again because building my own was so completely satisfying.”

Every Picture Tells a Story.


Brett Baumann, Burnside Forge wrote:

“Metal Guru has the process down to a science, the class is super thorough.”

“I learned how to build bikes with Carl. I was a student in his frame class. I learned how to weld while I was at college, and have been a professional metal fabricator for 12 years now, but welding bikes is very specific and exacting. Metal Guru has the process down to a science, the class is super thorough. I wondered how a student with little or no previous welding experience could get through it and produce a quality frame, but he has had a few students come through since I did it, and all with flying colors. You can trust him to provide a quality tube set, appropriate for learning and that will ride great. I haven’t taken any other bike building class, but from what I’ve read you’ll get a much higher end product and a much more depth of knowledge from Carl’s class.

I’ve built a total of 5 bikes in the past year, which have all been received by ecstatic clients (except the first one, which I have kept and personally ridden the snot out of all season). It’s a side project I am continuing with.

I think anyone would be happy with his or her experience there. Feel free to contact me any more questions.“

Brett Baumann, Burnside Forge

Burnside Forge paints.
Brett builds a Burnside Forge.
Another new frame.